home about speaking she cares resources contact

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Sentenced

A link or two in my inbox convicted me this morning. Again. As I watched a video yesterday morning at a meeting, the gnawing began.



I knew it was time to rearrange a bit. Push a few things to the corner and dust off another.

Small steps are better than no steps, I whisper to myself.  But small steps aren’t enough to fill your soul, my heart shouts.

And I’m caught, twisted in the net of needs, responsibilities and musts—a net that tangles and strangles desire, dream, inspiration and creativity.

Until Conviction cuts them lose.

I’m once again sentenced. (Pun intended.)

God can do anything, you know—far more than you could ever imagine or guess or request in your wildest dreams! He does it not by pushing us around but by working within us, his Spirit deeply and gently within us. Ephesians 3:20 The Message


Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Sprinkling Extraordinary

Exciting news. God uses ordinary [and I have a new hair color].

The [people] were amazed when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, for they could see that they were ordinary men with no special training in the Scriptures. They also recognized them as men who had been with Jesus. (Acts 4:13 NLT)

Recognition. Specialness in my ordinary. This is what I want. This gives me hope. I can have this [and a new hair color] when I meet with Jesus. He sprinkles His extraordinary all over my ordinary. 

As I was studying the Scriptures in my ordinary, not all that special way, [with a new hair color] God showed me a picture of how each of His masterpieces functions uniquely to reach hurting people. Actually, in case you're wondering, I study Scripture sitting in my big comfy leather chair surrounded by my favorite things. My NLT One-Year Bible and Bible Gateway on my iPad to look up cross references and parallel translations quickly. My cute zebra-striped journal for writing thoughts or ideas for future blog posts, Bible studies or speaking engagements and 3X5 spiral bound index cards for noting special verses to carry around in my purse. 


I also look up everything that sparks my imagination in my grandma's old big green Living Bible these days. I'm also reading Renee Swope's book, A Confident Heart right now. Some days I start with the one-year Bible, some days I start with A Confident Heart. I don't have a formula or strict routine. I just go and I sit; just me and Jesus getting cozy and exploring His written words. I try to sit until I hear Him speak something fresh to my stale heart. My heart tends to be like fresh bread, the longer it sits out, the quicker it grows stale. I need a protective barrier from all the living out that I do.


In chapter 8 of ACH, Renee says, "A woman with a confident heart chooses to believe that God wants to make an impact through her life, and she looks for ways to let Him." (p.154)


As I contemplate on ordinary and my own common life, mediocre talents and average abilities, I realize it's hard for me to choose to believe this. Today is the day I begin to live confidently and choose to believe I am chosen. Will you join me in living in this place?


Let's do what we love to do in our own special way and celebrate our uniqueness today remembering we were lovingly created by our Master's hands...

Photo credit
Carefully, thoughtfully and individually designed by God out of deep lovingkindness and rich creativity to minister in special one-of-a-kind ways


Did you know He made YOU to reveal Jesus to somebody else? There is at least one other person in this world needing your unique, one-of-a-kind touch. There is another waiting to hear your story, longing to see how His story fits on you. Maybe if you show off His fashion on you, somebody will else will have the courage to try on Jesus in their own life.

We must be confident as His individual masterpieces so Jesus' desire that ALL will find truth might be accomplished. "[Jesus] who wants everyone to be saved and to understand the truth." (1 Timothy 2:4) 


He doesn’t need us; yet He chooses us. You are chosen. I am chosen. We are a chosen people. This truth is upgrading my ordinary. 

When we spend time sitting with Jesus, He sprinkles His extraordinary all over our ordinary making something miraculous happen.

I hope you’ll watch this short video to see some extraordinary ordinary in action. [along with my new lighter hair color **wink wink**]

What type of pitcher are you and what special blend of refreshment are you offering others?

Remember we are chosen. Useful. Special.

For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago. Ephesians (2:10 NLT)


If you'd like encouragement on how God can use ordinary, sign up in the top left column and blog posts will come straight to your inbox.

Saturday, March 03, 2012

Going Dark

Yup, I did it. 

I went dark.

I needed to go undercover, get out of the bloggy spotlight. I thought it was for my kids. And it was.

But it was also for me.

It’s true I got lost in a dark dungeon called Depression. It’s true that depression created a writer’s block so deep in my soul, I questioned ever writing again; I even told God it hurt but I would get over it if words were a gift that wasn’t meant to last a lifetime. It’s also true that my depression stirred from being mad at God. It is. It hurts me to say it. And I can’t say, “kinda mad,” because I was just.so.very.stinkin’.mad I coulda spit. That’s the sad, sad truth. As a result, I pulled away from you because I felt my messages were futile, that they didn’t matter.

Honesty can be painful.

In my hurt, The Rescuer came. He showed me there’s more to life than words. There’s Life. I needed the reminder. He showed me how He has never abandoned me in heartache but had equipped me with access to The Healer before my heart ever broke.

When at last the scarlet rope was lowered into the dungeon and words of life were birthed once again, other obstacles presented themselves, like, going back to work fulltime in addition to my four growing blessings.

When depression hit me in the gut, it not only took my breath away but stole the very life from my soul. As the fog of depression descended on me, I felt relationships slipping, every one of them.  My relationships with God , friends and family all suffered.

Because writing was hard, it began taking up more and more time leaving me feeling worthless, frustrated and guilty as I rose from my empty screen. My children resented the face time I was giving my computer because the face time I was giving them lost its quality and focus. I initially took a bloggy leave of absence to focus on them last summer.

As I’ve recovered, the negative emotions that overwhelmed me have faded and I’ve been tempted to wonder if the time off was fruitful or  just plain futile.

Last week, my ten-year-old daughter left me this sticky note.

It sang grace, encouragement and focus to my starving mommy’s heart—not to mention the tears. I did the ugly cry.

It was the first of several breakthrough moments I’ve had in the last week with my children.

If there was ever any question, it is now answered. It was worth it. It feels great to be back in the light. I’m completing the plunge back by getting my hair blonded next week.

"Nothing could make me happier than getting reports that my children continue diligently in the way of Truth!" 3 John 1:4 (The Message)

Now I’m ready to give you some face time. Please share. When have you taken a blog vacation and what were the results? 


If you’d like to see what re-entering looks like via blog, sign up to receive my posts directly to your inbox. It's easy, it's free and let's face it, I need the subscribers after such a long hiatus. **grins** Just put your email address in the box at the top of the left hand column.